Rafael Nadal admits he thought he would have retired by now

Rafael Nadal admits he thought he would have retired by now

Rafael Nadal admits he thought he would have retired by now

Rafael Nadal won his 11th French Open title yesterday when he defeated Dominic Thiem in the final.

Sunday's result marks the sixth consecutive Grand Slam won by either Nadal or 20-time major champion Roger Federer.

When Rafael Nadal broke down in tears on the Roland Garros podium on Sunday as 15,000 people, plus a smattering of Hollywood heavyweights, stood and honoured his staggering 11th French Open triumph, it was enough to make his desperate rivals weep.

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"So coming back and having the chance to win in Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Rome, and now especially here, it's very emotional for me".

The mayor said the plaque will be displayed in a yet-to-be-decided sports facility, and praised Nadal as both a human being and a champion.

Nadal is now up to 17 Grand Slam titles, second all time to Roger Federer. "If you told seven or eight years ago that I will be here at 32 years old having this trophy with me again, I will tell you that is something nearly impossible, but here we are".

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Such is their dominance that former world number one Marat Safin, a two-time major victor, told reporters at the French Open that he would not be surprised to see Nadal and Federer "play until they are 40". Nadal's had some challenges at Roland-Garros' championship stage over the years, but few athletes in any sport have ever been more acclimatized to a venue the way Nadal has owned the terra firma of Roland-Garros' grounds. "He's won seven times at Wimbledon so he'll definitely be up there as one of the favourites, but you never know; it depends a little bit on the draw". No, no, no, I can't - I can't be always thinking of more.

Roland Garros runner-up Dominic Thiem also improved his ranking by a solitary rung, finding himself in the seventh spot. "I would tell you that's something nearly impossible, but here we are", Nadal told reporters.

"I would love to be playing in as many places as possible, but you understand I need to check how I feel in the next couple of days", said Nadal as he pondered his preparation for Wimbledon which gets underway in three weeks' time. Of course decide what's better for my body. "You could nearly see the hand start cramping up as the fingers go stiff - it's a awful feeling", Croft said. I didn't see much from the finals because I arrived here, warmed-up and played by myself. "I am enjoying the moment".

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"For sure, me, I'm confident that this was not my last Grand Slam final, " Thiem said, "and that's my biggest goal: to get into the next one and then to do better than today". Plus, consider this: Coco Gauff, a 14-year-old from Florida, beat Caty McNally, a 16-year-old from OH, in the junior final, the fourth time at the last five Grand Slam tournaments that two Americans played each other for the girls' title.

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